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It’s Good Friday – traditionally the day for planting potatoes.  Now this has never made much sense to me when the date of Good Friday changes each year, and the spring weather is pretty unreliable too.  But, as it turns out, there is a reason for the choice of Good Friday for potato planting.  Potatoes were of course, discovered in South America and brought to Europe by the Spanish during the 16th century.  The arrival in Europe of a crop that wasn’t mentioned in the Bible, led to many people seeing potatoes as the devil’s food.  One way to get around this was to plant them on Good Friday, in ground that had been blessed.  But this year is not one to be planting potatoes out on Good Friday.  I’m not going to say anything about the weather again, enough of that already, but let’s just say conditions aren’t yet favourable for planting in the veggie patch… The potatoes will have to wait, although I think I’ll plant a couple of my chitted potatoes into large pots in the greenhouse – it’s nice to keep to the tradition of Good Friday planting for at least some of the potatoes.

Potato

Since I wrote about making paper pots last month, there has been some interest in the brown paper pots that I used to make for herbs.

Brown paper pot

These pots were inspired by an idea in a Martha Stewart magazine.  The original pots were made from coloured paper, and pictured in the magazine filled with crisps or something – a suggestion for a fancy way to serve snacks at a party.  I adapted this idea to make a biodegradable pot out of recycled brown paper.  Anna has left a comment asking if I could give some instructions for making these pots – so here we go…

Take a square of brown paper (or any paper really – but it needs to be sturdy enough to stand up to being filled with compost and watered).  For these photos, I used a 12″ (30cm) square, which makes a useful sized pot, but you can play around with sizes.

Pic 1

 

First fold the square in half to make a triangle.

 

 

 

Pic 2

 

With the folded edge at the bottom, fold one of the base corners across the triangle so that it lines up with the opposite edge.

 

 

 

Pic 3

 

Fold the other bottom corner across in the same way to touch the other side.

 

 

 

Pic 4

 

Then fold the small triangles formed at the top of the pot down over each side.

 

 

 

Open out the pot by putting your hand inside, then fold the bottom corners in towards the centre to make a flat base.  And there you have it a ‘posh’ paper pot.

Pic 5

Like all paper pots, they need reasonably gentle handling and don’t last forever, but the whole thing can be planted into the ground, allowing you to start your seedlings indoors and transplant them to the garden without any root disturbance when the warmer weather arrives – and it will.

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